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Woman lived on the streets for 16 years but never asked anyone for cash


Everyone has their own unique story, and it’s important to remember that. An 80-year-old woman has lived a life full of surprises and lessons. Some people always seem happy, while others face challenges. This woman’s journey might teach us all something.

For 16 years, Wanda Ritter was homeless and always said, “the government owed her $100,000.” She had a suitcase full of papers and uncashed checks. But many people just thought she was mentally ill and didn’t take her seriously.

Getty Images/H. Armstrong Roberts

Wanda Ritter, a former locksmith and mom of four, walked around Washington’s streets saying the Social Security System owed her money. She always carried her luggage, fearing that if she left it behind, people would label her as crazy.

Julie Turner, a 56-year-old social worker, decided to look into Wanda’s claims. After checking the documents, she was shocked. Julie realized Wanda wasn’t crazy; she was right. The government really owed her $100,000.

Wanda got monthly checks from $300 to $900 but never used them. She felt something was off with them, so she sent them back. She then talked to Social Security Services about the issue. Wanda told reporters that she was worried if she used the checks and later said there was an error, nobody would listen to her. She hoped to fix the problem once she understood it better.

Getty Images/Thomas McGovern

Thanks to Julie Turner, the social worker, Wanda got an apartment for $500, changing her life. A week after her story became popular, Wanda got a $1,644 check from Social Security. It was a big step towards getting what she deserved.

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